The world watches in awe as Perseid meteor shower lights up the night sky with shooting star spectacular
The world is watching in awe as the Perseid meteor shower lights up the night sky with spectacular shooting stars across the globe.
The United States, Europe, and Canada will be able to see the Perseids at their best, with similarly stellar views in Mexico and Central America, Asia, much of Africa, and parts of South America.
Known as the ‘fiery tears of Saint Lawrence’, the celestial showcase takes place when the Earth ploughs through the galactic debris left discarded by the passing of the Swift-Tuttle Comet.
According to Nasa, the meteor shower will enjoy its highest activity from 4 pm ET (9 pm BST) on Sunday 12th until 4 am (9 am BST) on Monday 13th.
With a new moon providing an extra-dark backdrop to the spectacle, the shooting stars will be brighter than ever. Peak temperatures can reach as much as 10,000F (5,537F) as they speed across the sky.
The meteors, mostly no bigger than a grain of sand, burn up as they hit the atmosphere at 36 miles (58 km) per second to produce a shooting stream of light in the sky.
The meteors are called Perseids because they seem to dart out of the constellation Perseus.
Dr Robert Massey, from the Royal Astronomical Society, said: ‘Unlike a lot of celestial events, meteor showers are easy to watch and no special equipment is needed, although a reclining chair and a blanket make viewing much more comfortable.’
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